Cracking the Code: 10 Gen Z Vocabulary You Need to Know


Are you trying to decipher what your younger cousin, niece, or neighbourhood teen means when they say something is “lit” or “extra”? Here’s a guide to the ever-evolving and slightly baffling world of Gen Z slang. Fear not, you’re about to get a crash course in the Gen Z lingo that’s popular among the younger crowd. 


Starting off with a classic. If something is ‘lit’, it’s amazing or exciting. This word is about describing the level of awesomeness.


When someone is being ‘extra’, they’re being over the top or dramatic, but not necessarily in a bad way. It means they’re probably doing or being too much.


‘Low-key’ is used to describe something you’re modestly passionate about. “I low-key love this song.” On the flip side, ‘high-key’ is for times when you’re openly enthusiastic. “I high-key can’t wait for the weekend!”


To ‘flex’ is to show off. You may think it’s about muscles, but more often, it’s about accomplishments, possessions, or anything else you might brag about.


Coming from the Eminem song of the same name, to ‘stan’ someone or something is to be an avid fan. It goes beyond just liking and describes being a superfan.


Feeling ‘salty’? Then you’re probably a bit upset or bitter about something, often in a somewhat humorous way.


‘Ghosting’ is when someone suddenly cuts off all communication without explanation. This is a modern dating term that’s found its way into broader use.


If someone is ‘slaying’, they are doing really well or looking great. It’s a word of empowerment and appreciation. 


This one’s a bit tricky as it has a couple of meanings. It can be used as an exclamation of excitement or to indicate throwing something with force.

Understanding Gen Z slang is about staying connected and understanding the cultural nuances of a generation that’s growing up in a vastly different digital landscape. So next time you hear these terms, you can nod in understanding, maybe even use them to show you’re in the know!